Priscilla Presley was in Baz Luhrman’s Elvis, but it was very much his story. Now her side of the storied romance comes from Sofia Coppola’s Priscilla, based on Priscilla Presley’s memoir Elvis and Me.
In a tweet that coincided with the first trailer for the upcoming film — and came soon after a TMZ story saying Elvis Presley’s estate isn’t happy — Priscilla Presley endorsed Coppola’s work and said she’s very on board for the biopic.
“I am excited bout the interpretation of my book by the masterful Sofia Coppola,” Priscilla Presley tweeted. “She has such an extraordinary perspective and I have always been such an admirer of her work. I’m certain this movie will take everyone on an emotional journey.”
Soon after the first Priscilla trailer arrived, TMZ quoted anonymous officials with the Elvis Presley estate, one of whom said it “feels like a college movie.” The anonymous complainer added, “The set designs are just horrific, it’s not what Graceland looks like.”
You can judge for yourself here:
Who Plays Priscilla Presley in the Sofia Coppola Film?
Priscilla stars Cailee Spaeny as Priscilla and Jacob Elordi as Elvis. Spaeny previously starred in 2020’s The Craft: Legacy and the Sundance charmer How It Ends, both for writer-director Zoe Lister-Jones. (Her How It Ends character played the inner child of Lister-Jones’ character.) Spaeny also had a big 2018, appearing in Bad Times at the El Royale and Pacific Rim: Uprising.
Elordi, meanwhile, stars in HBO’s Euphoria and the Kissing Booth franchise. He follows in the blue suede shoes of Austin Butler, who earned a Best Actor Oscar nomination for his interpretation of The King in Luhrman’s Elvis, a summer hit in which Olivia DeJonge played Priscilla Presley.
“For me, it was just about playing her not as a normal person, obviously, but as a young woman, rather than this caricature that we oftentimes cement people into historically, particularly women,” DeJonge, a 23-year-old Australian, told MovieMaker when Elvis was released. “I just wanted to bring more depth than how we often remember women.”
Priscilla Presley, née Priscilla Wagner, was just 14 when she met the 24-year-old Elvis in 1959, during his military service in West Germany. She was born in New York City, but traveled all over the United States and eventually to West Germany because of her stepfather’s Air Force career.
She and Presley married in 1967, but divorced in 1973, four years before his death at 42 in his Memphis home, Graceland.
Priscilla Presley went on to be the co-founder and former chairwoman of Elvis Presley Enterprises, which turned Graceland into a tourist attractions that continues to draw millions. She also enjoyed an acting career that included co-starring with Leslie Nielsen in the Naked Gun saga. She published Elvis and Me in 1986.
Both Priscilla and Sofia Coppola know all about family legacies: Coppola played an infant in her father Francis Ford Coppola’s film The Godfather Part II, and later became a household name with her appearance in its long-awaited sequel The Godfather Part III, in which she took over the prominent role of Mary Corleone. (She replaced Winona Ryder, who dropped out due to illness.)
Sofia Coppola quickly established herself as one of the best filmmakers of her generation with The Virgin Suicides (1999), the first of several collaborations with Kirsten Dunst, and Lost in Translation (2003), for which she won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. Her most recent film, On the Rocks, reunited her with Lost in Translation star Bill Murray.
Main image: Cailee Spaeny as Priscilla Presley.